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Jordanians protest Israeli gas deal

Jordanians continue to oppose the natural gas deal struck with Israel, arguing that it threatens the country’s economic and political independence.
Jordanian protesters take part in a march against a government agreement to import natural gas from Israel, in Amman March 6, 2015. The red placards read "The enemy's gas is occupation".  REUTERS/Majd Jaber (JORDAN - Tags: POLITICS ENERGY CIVIL UNREST BUSINESS) - RTR4SBDC

A day after commemorating the 69th anniversary of Jordan’s independence, some 30 Jordanians gathered at the entrance of the House of Representatives May 26 to protest the government’s agreement to import natural gas from Israel. They held signs and hoisted pins bearing such slogans as “The enemy’s gas is occupation,” “We refuse to give up sovereignty over our energy” and the like. It was clear that opposition to the $15 billion deal will not diminish with time. According to the protesters, the agreement represents a moral hazard as well as a threat to Jordanian sovereignty.

Braving 97 F (36 C) weather, the protesters arrived outside the legislature at 1 p.m. The crowd largely consisted of members of the Jordanian National Campaign Against the Gas Agreement with the Zionist Entity (Israel). The campaign is an umbrella coalition of 27 organizations, which, according to campaign coordinator Hisham Bustani, includes “political parties, professional associations, retired veterans and [pro-reform] Herak movements.” As was the case with previous protests against the deal, organizers spread the word in part through social media, with a Facebook event and tweets using the hashtag “The enemy’s gas is occupation” (in Arabic).

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